As anyone who’s ever attended a concert can deduce, musicians aren’t the only ones suffering from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the live-entertainment industry: An entire economy of roadies, technicians, security and many more have been deeply impacted by the postponement of virtually every concert tour in the world.
Live Nation, the world’s largest live-entertainment company, has stepped up by establishing Crew Nation, a charitable fund to which it is contributing an initial $5 million donation, to help support concert crews around the world. It will then match the next $5 million given by artists, fans and employees dollar for dollar.
Crew Nation is powered by Music Forward Foundation, a charitable 501c3 organization, that will be administering the fund. Donations can be made here via PayPal.
“Live music inspires millions around the world, but the concerts we all enjoy wouldn’t be possible without the countless crew members working behind the scenes. As COVID-19 puts concerts on pause, we want to extend a helping hand to the touring and venue crews who depend on shows to make a living,” the company said in a statement. “Crew Nation was created to do just that.”
It lists eligible workers as “all the backstage staff that help bring concerts to life including: tour managers, production managers, riggers, sound engineers, backline techs, lighting directors/designers, special effects teams, carpenters, and more.”
“Crew members are the backbone of the live music industry, and we hope you’ll join us in supporting them through this temporary intermission until we can once again unite millions around the world through the power of live music. Thanks for your support, and we look forward to seeing you at a show again soon.”
Live Nation chairman/CEO Michael Rapino said in a social-media post that his family will be personally donating $250,000.
The company said it will be contacting crew members whose income has already been impacted due to the cancellation or rescheduling of a Live Nation event. Music Forward Foundation will be selecting recipients based on a determination of need. Also, the company will be releasing an application for crews in the coming weeks.
Concerts wouldn’t be possible without the crew working behind the scenes to bring them to life. While concerts are on pause @LiveNation has committed $10 million to the #CrewNation fund, and the Rapino family will be donating $250,000. Learn more: https://t.co/XoZ5Wh60Cd
— Michael Rapino (@Michael_Rapino) March 31, 2020